11. Together we make the IoT work: Nisshinbo Micro Devices and Infineon produce the world’s smallest class radar module
To shape the IoT’s future, it does not only need a high-quality and holistic portfolio of products and solutions, we also build on long-term, reliable relationships with our customers, distributors, and ecosystem partners to ensure optimal results for all players. Because only together is it possible to create groundbreaking innovations for the Internet of Things. That's why in this episode we are very pleased to welcome one of our partners here: Nisshinbo Micro Devices Inc. Together, Nisshinbo Micro Devices and Infineon produce the world’s smallest class radar module. What is behind this solution and how it supports our customers, that is what we want to talk about.
- Hiroshi HOSAKA, Nisshinbo Micro Devices
- Yoshimasa TAKAHASHI, Infineon Japan
Date of publication: 23 March 2022
The potential of the Internet of Things is well known. But how do we actually implement it? How can people and companies benefit from it? In this podcast, we meet experts from infineon, partners and customers who tell us how it can work and what it takes to Make IoT work. My name is Thomas Reinhardt, I am your host, and I am excited to have this great opportunity sharing this podcast with all of you.
To make the IoT work it does not only need a high-quality and holistic portfolio of products and solutions. To shape the IoT’s future, we also build on long-term, reliable relationships with our customers, distributors, and ecosystem partners to ensure optimal results for all players.
Because only together is it possible to create groundbreaking innovations for the Internet of Things. That's why I'm very pleased to welcome one of our partners here today: Nisshinbo Micro Devices Inc. With me today from Nisshinbo Micro Devices is Hosaka-san who is Business Development Manager in the Microwave division. A warm welcome to you. I am glad that you are here.
Thank you for the invitation.
And I would also like to extend a warm welcome to Takahashi-san, from Infineon’s division PSS.
Thank you for inviting me.
Hosaka-san, for all our listeners who don’t know your company yet: Please give us a brief insight into your corporation and its activities.
Nisshinbo Microdevices is one of the few manufacturers that produce both electronic device products and microwave products. Our business is centered on electronic device products, namely ICs. Microwave products, on the other hand, include radar, communication devices, and sensors that use radio waves. We have expertise in analog circuit design, which is essential for the realization of the IoT, and are developing products that meet the new market needs by fusing our long-cultivated microwave technology with advanced semiconductor technology.
Nisshinbo Micro Devices was born by a merger of New Japan Radio and Ricoh Electronic Devices in January this year. We’re looking forward to working with you as a Nisshinbo Micro Devices.
In April last year, Nisshinbo Micro Devices and Infineon entered into a partnership to jointly develop a novel radar solution. How did it come, Takahashi-san?
Radar sensing at 60 GHz is a solution characterized by non-contact and highly accurate measurement. As we’re facing a market demand which needs smaller and lower power radar to meet advanced IoT applications, Infineon Japan has addressed this challenge and co-developed with Nisshinbo Micro Devices the non-contact, high-precision radar solution 60GHz radar module to meet these requirements.
As Infineon Japan has already worked with New Japan Radio Co. (NJRC) in the 24GHz radar business where the company provides analog solutions through their market leading technologies of electronics devices and microwave Infineon chose the company again, this time as module manufacturer partner. So Infineon Japan and Nisshinbo Micro Devices agreed to co-work on this project to produce the world’s smallest class radar module.
The world’s smallest class radar module. That sounds great. But would you explain to our listeners how it works and what is behind this solution, please?
Yes, it’s non-contact, high-precision radar solution 60GHz radar smart sensor micro module. The standard module for Nisshinbo Micro Devices's 60GHz radar sensor module is a turnkey solution that consists of a modularized microcontroller PSoC™ 6 with Infineon's XENSIV™ "BGT60TR13C" MMIC. It provides a total solution including not only hardware but also software, and can be used for applications such as human detection and access control.
In addition, in order to use radar, it is necessary to obtain Radio Law certification for each application, and without this certification, the radar cannot be used. This certification is required for each application by the manufacturers or the end users, which has been a major hurdle, but the new radar module has already been certified by Nisshinbo Micro Devices and can be used easily.
So together, we make the IoT work. What does the collaboration look like now? Which partner has which responsibilities?
The 60GHz radar sensor module will be made into a module with technical approval by Nisshinbo Micro Devices based on Infineon's reference design, and sampling has started by Nisshinbo Micro Devices.
What advantages does this joint solution offer customers?
This sensor module has the following four strengths with radar.
• The first is low privacy invasiveness. Currently, products that use cameras to detect people and their movements have been released, but the fact that these products record images raises concerns about privacy issues. Radar, on the other hand, detects people's movements but does not record the actual images, so it does not cause such problems.
• The second is stability. Radar sensing is highly robust and stable in that it is not easily affected by external factors such as changes in temperature. Compared to infrared and other sensors that are easily affected by temperature, radar sensing can be used regardless of location and environment.
• The third is operation in the dark. A camera may not be able to detect the movement of a target in a dark place. Since radar is not affected by brightness, it is able to detect in dark areas that are difficult to detect with cameras.
• The fourth is the design of the final product. Radar can be installed in the bezel of a computer or TV because of its material-permeable nature. It is also very small (10 mm x 13.4 mm x 1.2 mm), so it can be integrated in many applications. Customers will be able to provide well-designed products to end users, and we will have stylish and user-friendly products.
And for which areas can the 60GHz Radar Standard Module be used?
In situations such as the pandemic caused by COVID-19, there is a growing demand to control the movement of people. In response to this, IoT control has become a trend, and with it, the demand for sensing devices to sense information is also growing. This market is currently dominated by the use of cameras and infrared, and is becoming more and more active, with the addition of radar solutions.
This sensor module can be used as an IoT sensor in smart homes and smart buildings, replacing traditional cameras and infrared. In the application of people detection, it can be installed and placed in a room such as a smart home with IoT and AI technology, and it will react to the presence and movement of people and automatically take the necessary controls. For example, by mounting it on a computer or TV, it can automatically control the screen and lighting on and off. Human presence and movement become the interface.
If a listener is now interested in more information about the module, where can he turn?
Both links are mentioned in the transcript page of this podcast so you can just click on it for more information.
We commit. We partner. We innovate. We perform. I think this is particularly well demonstrated in this great partnership. I would like to thank my guests for giving us an insight into this exciting project, which shows how we are working together to make the IoT work.
This brings us to the end of this episode. Dear listeners, for more information, please visit infineon.io. We will publish the next episode soon.